Best Hiking Backpack Under $50

Best Hiking Backpack Under $50: Top 5 Reviewed 2021

It’s no secret that hiking gear can be expensive. The sheer amount of equipment required can add up to eye-watering costs, with hiking backpacks being one of the biggest outlays.

If you’re a budget friendly explorer looking to keep down costs, you’ve come to the right place. We have done extensive research to find the best hiking backpack under $50, proving that quality doesn’t need to cost a fortune.

This guide uses detailed reviews and comparison to help you find a backpack that suits your hiking style. Every option is proven to provide quality and practicality without breaking the bank.

Ranking The Best Hiking Backpacks Under $50

  1. Loowoko Hiking Backpack
  2. Esup Hiking Backpack
  3. Kailas Hiking Daypack
  4. Fendong Hiking Backpack
  5. WintMing Hiking Backpack

Best Hiking Backpack Under $50 Comparison

Name

Price

Overview

Packed with premium features, it's the ultimate budget hiking backpack

Lightweight and simple backpack for weight concious day-hikers

A practical and lightweight backpack that is comfortable to carry

Multi-functional, waterproof and durable multiday pack

Built to maximize storage space with enough suspension to cope with heavy loads

Best For

Overall

Daypack

Overnight

Multiday

Extended Trip

Pros

Large main compartment, variety of outer pockets, waterproof cover, mesh ventilation

Lightweight, comfortable, good suspension, durable

Great pocket layout, lightweight, comfortable, breathable back panel

Durable, waterproof, variety of pockets and attachments, reliable

Comfortable, size expansion system, useful back pockets, good weather-resistance

Cons

Questionable seam durability

Hydration bladder compartment is difficult to use

Not fully waterproof, zippers lack durability

Shoulder pads lack comfort, no internal frame

Lacks durability

Overall Rating

Capacity

50L

20L

40L

50L

70L

Weight

2lbs. 9.6oz (1200g)

1lbs. 8oz (700g)

1lbs. 14.4oz (862g)

2lbs. 9.6oz (1179g)

2lbs. 13.8oz (1297g)

Why Do I Need The Best Hiking Backpack Under $50?

Hiking can be an expensive hobby. Quality equipment is a requirement if you want to maximize your time on the trail, which can often come at a steep cost.

One of the most important hiking items you will own is your backpack. It is trusted with keeping your supplies and essentials secure, so making sure it’s built to a high standard is vital.

Despite most good packs costing extortionate prices, it is possible to find quality on a budget. If you know the key indicators to look for and take information from trusted sources, there are some great ‘value for money’ backpacks on the market.

In our quest to find the best hiking backpack under $50, we have analysed the pros and cons of the best budget options around. By comparing each product and its optimal usage, we aim to find the one that works for the type of hiking you love to seek.

Best Hiking Backpack Under $50
Finding a quality hiking backpack for a budget price is possible

How To Choose The Best Hiking Backpack Under $50

Capacity

Capacity refers to amount of storage space a backpack possesses. The amount of gear you need to carry will be the main deciding factor here, which is mostly affected by type of hiking and time of year.

In order to give you a reference for capacity, we have split our backpacks into four types. Each one is best suited to a different scenario and will have unique benefits.

Daypack (30 Liters or Less)

If you’re a self-proclaimed ‘speed hiker’ or avid day-hiker looking to cut weight, getting a daypack is your best bet. Generally coming in at less than 30L, they have the capacity to carry enough supplies for a single day on the trail.

Daypacks are the most lightweight options available, while also feeling stable and secure on challenging terrain. However, the limited packing space can make them come up short for those that find packing light challenging.

Overnight (30-50 Liters)

As you might already suspect, overnight backpacks have the capacity to carry enough gear for a single night away. They give you the packing space to enjoy a weekend in the outdoors, while still keeping things fast and light.

Efficient packers find overnight backpacks ideal, providing just enough space for a night away without unnecessary bulk. However, if you’re looking to bring plenty of camping equipment, they might not meet your size requirements.

Multiday (50-70 Liters)

If you’re planning on spending 2-5 nights on the trail, we recommend getting a multiday pack. As the name suggests, it will provide the required space for a few days worth of hiking gear.

Multiday backpacks provide enough space to satisfy the ambitions of most hikers, making them a popular choice. For anyone that prefers summer hiking trips over long weekends, this is the type of backpack for you.

Extended Trip (70 Liters or More)

If you plan on spending more than 5 days in the outdoors, you should be looking for an extended trip backpack. They provide enough space to satisfy thru-hikers, with ample room for a vast array of hiking gear.

Winter hikers should also look towards extended trip backpacks due to the added equipment required to brave cold weather. The obvious downside here is their significant weight once packed, but this should be expected when you’re hiking for many days.

Best Hiking Backpack Under $50
Pack size should be your first consideration

Pockets and Compartments

Every hiking backpack will have a different variation of pockets and compartments. Making sure you have a good setup will make your gear easy to stash, access and sort while you’re on the trail.

External Pockets

External pockets are all about accessibility. They provide a great place to stash your rain jacket, midlayer, personal items or anything else you might need at short notice.

Popular packs often include a range of floating pockets, elasticated side pockets and smaller front pockets. If you want to maximize practicality, hipbelt pockets can provide a great place to store your trail mix.

It’s also worth keeping an eye out for attachment points. Often coming in the form of loops, they are a great place to hang your trekking poles or ice axe.

Main Compartment

The bulk of your packing space will be inside the main compartment. It’s where you can stuff any gear you don’t need at short notice.

Most backpacks use a top loading method to access the main compartment. It will usually be closed with a cinch cord or roll top, which can be useful for compression.

Some offer an additional zipper on the front or side panel to give you another access point. It can be a great help when you need to retrieve something that’s deep inside your pack, negating the need to remove all your gear.

Ventilation

Let’s be honest, we all know that having a sweaty back is often a part of any summer hiking trip. However, a well-ventilated backpack can reduce your overheating issues to some degree.

Most hiking backpacks are designed to sit tight against your back, which is a recipe for warmth. However, some products combat this with the use of foam and mesh panels that create a small gap between your back and the pack.

When searching for the best hiking backpack under $50, it’s inevitable that ‘high-tech’ ventilation features might be sacrificed. However, a quality mesh panel can go a long way to stop you getting hot and bothered during the summer months.

Waterproofing

It might sound obvious, but keeping your gear dry isn’t something to take for granted. Every hiking backpack offers a different level of waterproofing, with not every product capable of withstanding heavy rainfall.

Most of the best hiking backpacks under $50 are made from water-resistant fabrics. Polyester and nylon are the most popular, with both providing enough resistance to withstand light drizzle.

If you really want to ensure waterproofing on the wettest days, look for products that include a durable water repellent (DWR) coating. Alternatively, backpacks that come with a specific rain cover that is designed for wet weather and should be prioritised by winter hikers.

Best Hiking Backpack Under $50
If you want to protect your electronic, you better prioritise waterproof backpacks

Best Overall Hiking Backpack Under $50

Loowoko Hiking Backpack

Loowoko Budget Hiking Backpack

Comfort

Ventilation

Water-Resistance

Pockets & Straps

Adjustability

Practicality (Ease-Of-Use)

Durability

Overall

Sticking to a budget generally means that you need to compromise an element of performance or forgo some practical features. However, the Loowoko hiking backpack can provide you with almost everything you would expect from a top of the range’ product for a fraction of the price.

During our analysis, we were impressed with the variety of pockets and compartments available throughout. The inclusion of hipbelt pockets is an added bonus, with the exterior attachment loops also useful for keeping your trekking poles on hand at all times.

Another area where the Lookwoko excels is weatherproofing. It comes complete with a waterproof cover for severe weather, along with ample breathability across the back panel and shoulder straps.

Overall, we firmly believe that the practicality, comfort and weather-resistance offered by the Lookwoko sets it apart as the best hiking backpack under $50. If you’re looking for a reliable multiday pack that will keep your gear secure in all conditions, you won’t be disappointed.

Pros

  • Practical pocket layout
  • Waterproof cover
  • Great ventilation
  • Useful attachment loops
  • Spacious main compartment
  • Useful hip pockets
  • Pack size is large enough without being restrictive

Cons

  • Shoulder straps can cause discomfort
  • Lacking internal frame

Best Hiking Daypack Under $50

Kailas Hiking Daypack

Kailas Budget Hiking Daypack

Comfort

Ventilation

Water-Resistance

Pockets & Straps

Adjustability

Practicality (Ease-Of-Use)

Durability

Overall

If you’re a day-hiker looking to stay fast and light on the trail, you will be hard pressed to find a better backpack than the Kailas 20L for less than $50. It’s designed to keep you walking at speed, providing just enough space to store the essential items required to keep you going throughout the day.

The Kailas uses a simple design that still manages to make your life practical. Although it’s small in size, it offers attachment loops for your trekking poles and side water bottle pockets made from stretch fabric.

Despite its somewhat challenging usability, there is the option to attach a water bladder for anyone hiking at speed. Another attribute ‘pace setters’ will appreciate is ventilation, with the Kailas offering a space suspension back panel that offers exceptional breathability for a budget backpack.

Anyone looking for a lightweight, stable and reliable daypack won’t be disappointed. The Kailas has proven to be the best day-hiking backpack under $50 thanks to its outstanding durability and ‘no-thrills’ design that will get the job done on any trail.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Stable and secure
  • Great back panel ventilation
  • Comfortable suspension
  • Durable design
  • Compact and compressible
  • Simple and effective interior pockets and exterior attachments

Cons

  • Hydration bladder setup is not very intuitive
  • Design is too simplistic for some ‘modern’ hikers

Best Overnight Hiking Backpack Under $50

Fendong Hiking Backpack

Fendong Budget Hiking Backpack

Comfort

Ventilation

Water-Resistance

Pockets & Straps

Adjustability

Practicality (Ease-Of-Use)

Durability

Overall

‘Overnight’ is one of the most versatile pack sizes, so it’s no surprise to see the Fendong hiking backpack is the most popular product on this list. Its 40L capacity lends itself well to anyone heading for weekend trip to the outdoors, with just enough space for your personal items and overnight gear.

Despite its moderate size, the Fendong is incredibly lightweight. At just 1lb. 14.4oz, it’s ideally suited to anyone looking for a bag to support their occasional overnight trips that is still easy to carry on the average day-hike.

We were also impressed with the pocket, compartment and attachment layout. The array of divided interior spaces are perfect for stashing your valuables without damage, while the exterior selection of pockets and straps can keep anything from your sleeping bag to your water bottles secure.

Anyone looking for lightweight practicality during overnight trips won’t be disappointed by the Fendong hiking backpack. Despite its wet weather limitations, we highly recommend it for those looking for a reliable pack that won’t break the bank.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable to carry
  • Decent back panel breathability
  • Handy internal compartments
  • Great range of exterior pockets and attachments
  • Feels secure when hiking
  • Versatile size and weight

Cons

  • Not fully waterproof
  • Zipper durability could be improved

Best Multiday Hiking Backpack Under $50

Esup Hiking Backpack

Esup Budget Hiking Backpack
  • Type: Multiday
  • Capacity: 50L
  • Weight: 2lb. 9.6oz (1179g)
  • Material: Polyester, Nylon
  • Waterproof: Yes
  • Retailers: Amazon
  • Alternate Versions: N/A

Comfort

Ventilation

Water-Resistance

Pockets & Straps

Adjustability

Practicality (Ease-Of-Use)

Durability

Overall

When it comes to multiday hiking, the key to a great backpack can often lie in its features. The Esup hiking backpack makes our list thanks to its impressive range of pockets and attachments, while also providing durability that’s well above what should be expected from a backpack costing less than $50.

The exterior pockets on offer are easy-to-use, with the addition of hipbelt pockets proving a useful factor when making our decision. When you add the straps, buckles and attachments; it’s easy to see why the Esup is one of the most practical budget backpacks around.

Another outstanding category for the Esup is weather-resistance. The naturally water-resistant outer shell is supported by a waterproof rain cover in harsh weather, while the ‘airstripes’ mesh back panel system provided ample breatjability on warmer days.

If you’re looking for a great all-round pack to support your multiday adventures, we strongly recommend the Esup hiking backpack. Its mix of practicality and durability will make your life simple, while it can also put up with any weather you might encounter.

Pros

  • Waterproof cover
  • Durable design
  • Accessible exterior pockets
  • Hipbelt pockets are handy
  • Great range of exterior pockets and attachments
  • Good back panel ventilation system
  • Holds up well when packed to the limit

Cons

  • Would hang better with an internal frame
  • Shoulder pads aren’t always comfortable

Best Extended Trip Hiking Backpack Under $50

WintMing Hiking Backpack

WintMing Budget Hiking Backpack

Comfort

Ventilation

Water-Resistance

Pockets & Straps

Adjustability

Practicality (Ease-Of-Use)

Durability

Overall

Finding a quality pack for an extended trip can be a challenge when you’re trying to stick to a budget. However, the WintMing hiking pack provides the space that backpackers require for a fraction of the price you would usually expect to pay.

The WintMing comes in at 70L of total storage space, with elastic drawstrings that can expand or collapse the main compartment based on how much gear you’re packing. The exterior zipper pockets proved to be useful and easy-to-access, while we also thought the laptop compartment was a handy feature and is capable of keeping all your electronics safe.

Comfort should also be a priority for anyone spending a significant amount of time on the trail, which is another area the WintMing stands above the competition. The thick padding used throughout the back panel, shoulder straps and waist strap might lack an element of breathability, but it gives the bag a secure feel on tough terrain.

During our research, the WintMing proved a great option for backpackers thanks to its increased adaptable size and general practicality. It’s a simple pack that’s practical and comfortable at all times, making it a solid choice for budget conscious thru-hikers.

Pros

  • Expandable main compartment
  • Comfortable to carry
  • Handy laptop compartment
  • Accessible exterior pockets
  • Tough 600D nylon fabric
  • Waterproof liner
  • Good size to weight ratio

Cons

  • Long-term durability can be an issue
  • Lacks ventilation

Summing Up

If you thought that quality hiking gear was going to cost a fortune, then think again. Every backpack on this list is capable of stashing your gear safely without breaking the bank.

When deciding on the best hiking backpack under $50, we analysed a multitude of options to find the right product. Despite having distinct differences, all of the products we have listed are well suited to their application.

Take the time to assess the type of hiking you will be completing before making your decision. When you stick to the key features and analyse the information, it’s easy to see why the backpacks on this list are so highly rated.